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UPDATED: A young artist is accusing Epic Games of stealing her design for the ‘Taro’ skin

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UPDATE 7:35 PT Sunday, March 31st: The main source of the news, DJShadow_TV has deleted the original tweet and said they were misled by the artist. The deletion came after a post by DingDongVG who checked a cached version of the artist’s DeviantArt site and saw that the photo replaced a different photo in the gallery section.

The one thing still left unexplained is the previous versions resembling her designs. Her Facebook post has been deleted and so have her previous designs which were in the comments. We will update this article again if there is more information that comes out in the coming days.

The original article is below in it’s entirety:

A post on Twitter gained traction yesterday when Ruby Ramirez, a young DeviantArt artist, alleged Epic stole her design.

A tweet from another artist DJShadow_TV was picked up by the community and currently sits at over 16,000 likes.

As you can see from the Facebook post, the two designs are very similar, from the unique aspects of the character to the colors chosen by the designer.

Here are some things that appear in both designs: Horns, blue hair behind a red/yellow headband, white face, red rope belt with white on the knot, and a feather-like design on the shoulder blades.

Here is the original Facebook post from the artist with the translation from Spanish beneath it:

Here is a translation where the top two breaks are from Google Translate and the bottom two were provided by one of readers (BlueLizard75) in the Twitter replies.

“Help: ^ (the fortnite took out a skin almost identical to my burrito and now I can not use it without being told to copy it 🙁

JzjNJ has already died my burrito x “d

Please, if you’re an “intellectual” wanting to be like a complete idiot better get out of here, they are disgusting :^(

by the way ,,, I did not do it for Fortnite, it’s one more character than the thousands I have, do not tell me that bullshit because I hit them”

Basically, she claims they copied her skin and is worried that now she won’t be able to use her own design without people claiming she copied it from Epic. She also says that she did not design it for Fortnite or send it to them at any time.

The dates have been called into question but multiple people have said they have seen her artwork before the design ever appeared in the game. DeviantArt appears to back this up according to this tweet:

While it is true that DeviantArt artists can change the contents of a post, people in the comments pulled up previous versions of her design where you can see the beginnings of the pictured design in the original Facebook post.

Forbes was one of the first sites to report these allegations and Forbes reporter Erik Kain reached out to Epic Games for comment.

A spokesperson replied to Kain with this: “We take these claims seriously and are in the process of investigating them.”

While Ramirez did not mention a lawsuit in her initial post, her comment sections were filled with people telling her to go after Epic Games in court.

Whether or not she has a case will come down to how much of the copyright she retains when posting a design to DeviantArt, and how similar a design must be to constitute copyright infringement.

Our readers are likely familiar with the lawsuits arising from rappers/actors alleging Epic stole their dances. As we covered previously, copyright of a dance is very tricky as they almost always have an influence from another source.

Art designs on the other hand are easier to identify a copyright case. Esports attorney Ryan Morrison offered free council to the artist but said he wouldn’t share his opinion on this matter in a public forum.

This is an evolving story and we will likely receive an update as to how Epic is going to proceed in the coming days.

Epic Games

Chad Mustard explains why we needed a new Fortnite map

Donald Mustard’s brother, Chad Mustard, discussed why Fortnite needed a new map from a game development standpoint.

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Dedicated Fortnite fans follow Donald Mustard on social media for hints about the future of the game. The Worldwide Creative Director of Epic Games loves to tweet out cryptic teasers about what the developers will be bringing to Fortnite in the future – many of which are impossible to decipher until they come to fruition.

Of course, teasing future seasons of Fortnite is only what Donald Mustard does for fun. When he’s on the clock, he’s steering the Fortnite ship and making decisions on where the game should go. Most players consider him to be the brain behind Fortnite’s ever-evolving world – whether this is entirely true or not.

Donald Mustard has a brother named Chad Mustard, who hosts a YouTube channel that is mostly dedicated to making Fortnite content, as you might expect. Recently, the latter sat down with fellow Fortnite YouTuber, I Talk Fortnite, to discuss several topics related to the game.

The two had a long and detailed conversation – most of which had to do with Creative Mode, which is the primary focus of the ‘Mustard Plays’ YouTube channel. Towards the end of the interview, I Talk Fortnite brought up the old Fortnite map and old graphics of the game. Mustard opened up a bit, here, explaining why Fortnite needed a new map.

“Here’s the problem with the old map,” Mustard began, “the old map was made in, like, a few weeks. Battle Royale was a test, and they were like, ‘hey, let’s put this together and figure out if this will work in our Fortnite system.”

As Mustard explained, Epic weren’t prepared for the success that Battle Royale brought to Fortnite. They wanted to use the exposure and revenue to expand the game, but the old map limited them.

“They can’t do things like water, you can’t swim, you can’t do dynamic things with mountains,” Mustard said when talking about the old Fortnite map. “This new map was built to fit all of their systems so that they can do more things – have more vehicles; systems like swimming or weather patterns … you could not do that on the old map and with the old graphics. That’s why they had to switch to a new map.”

(Topic starts at 2:05:35)

In essence, Chad Mustard explained that the game outgrew the restraints of the original Fortnite map. Epic brought us a new map that could take us into the future – what we’re playing now – and beyond; experimenting with elements that we haven’t even seen yet.

Will we ever go back the old Fortnite map? In our opinion, Epic will release it as a novelty at some point. If Mustard is correct, however, the future of Fortnite is the exclusive property of the Chapter 2 map and any other creation that comes out of it.

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Fortnite won’t come back to the Apple app store until at least next year

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Fortnite app store

The judge in the Apple vs Epic Games case has prevented the app store from blocking Unreal Engine games, but Apple won’t be forced to put Fortnite back.

Judge Yvonne Gonzales Rogers denied Epic’s preliminary injuction that would force Apple to put Fortnite back on the app store while the case goes on.

However, the judge did grant their other injuction, which stops Apple from banning apps made with Unreal Engine, which Epic owns and makes. You can see the full decision here.

That means, that unless Epic decides to remove it’s direct payment method for V-Bucks, which started this whole legal battle, we won’t see Fortnite back on iOS devices. Atleast, until the trial is over.

Apple vs Epic Games

The decision to keep Unreal Engine protected though, is to stop the dispute between Apple and Epic creating havoc for “bystanders” – aka other developers not involved in the litigation, who just happen to use Unreal Engine.

In a statement, Epic said: “Epic Games is grateful that Apple will continue to be barred from retaliating against Unreal Engine and our game development customers as the litigation continues. We will continue to develop for iOS and Mac under the court’s protection and we will pursue all avenues to end Apple’s anti-competitive behavior.”

Apple, on the other hand, said: “We’re grateful the court recognized that Epic’s actions were not in the best interests of its own customers and that any problems they may have encountered were of their own making when they breached their agreement.”

The trial will commence in May, 2021, when some sort of resolution to this case will hopefully be resolved. Until then, Fortnite won’t be on iPhones or iPads – that much is certain.

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Epic Games vs. Apple trial date set for May 3, 2021

Epic Games and Apple are set to hit the courtroom on May 3, 2021.

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The battle between the tech giants of Epic Games and Apple wages on as a trial date has been set for May 3, 2021. The United States District Court of the Northern District of California is set to hear the arguments starting at 8:30 AM PST on that date.

The trial date comes after the most recent hearing between Epic and Apple, which had many onlookers suspecting that a jury trial would take place in July of 2021. Instead, the court scheduled a bench trial for the previous month.

Several pre-trial dates are expected to accompany the final May 3 date, so we could hear more news about how the court is leaning – although nothing will be set in stone until May 2021, at least.

With a date set, we now know the first time that we could hear concrete news as to whether or not iOS players will be able to play Fortnite. So far, the court hasn’t been too sympathetic to Epic’s case after the way they handled it.

Epic knowingly circumvented the conditions of the Google Play Store and App Store when they allowed players to buy V-Bucks directly from the source. The former company knew that Apple and Google would take action, and were prepared to retaliate with legislation. The judge presiding over the matter sees this and doesn’t appear to respect the move.

Unfortunately for iOS Fortnite players, this news means that we’re waiting another seven months for news on when the game will be available, again. Sony and Microsoft may end up being the real winners here, as displaced mobile players pick up their new consoles to play their favorite game.

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